Thursday, July 18, 2024

Wenger: Singapore vital to new season preparation

Arsene Wenger says the timing and logistics of Arsenal’s pre-season trip to Singapore means his squad have no choice but to take their two friendlies seriously.

The Gunners face a Singapore XI on Wednesday [ko 8.30pm local time / 1.30pm BST] and then either Everton or Stoke City on Saturday as they take part in the Premier League Asia Trophy for the first time.

The matches are the first tests of a short summer break that continues next weekend with the Emirates Cup and concludes with a Wembley Community Shield showdown with Chelsea on 2 August.

Speaking to to Singapore, Wenger remarked: “A preparation that is not serious does not give you any hope. It’s a very serious preparation and we’ll take this Barclays Asia Trophy very seriously.

“The players compete for places in the team at this stage of the season as well, so [fans] can be absolutely reassured on that front that it is a serious competition.

“I feel it is closer to the start of the Premier League [this season compared to previous tours] and it is also different in the fact that we stay in one place and do not have to move. That is a massive difference because before we had trips where we spent three or four nights out of seven on a plane.

“When you get to your last game you are not completely in a good state to guarantee a performance and I believe it’s the best possible position for us to combine serious training and serious competition.”

The Gunners have taken a near full strength squad to Asia including Mathieu Debuchy. The Frenchman made only 15 appearances in an injury-hit debut season at the Emirates last campaign and is hoping to use pre-season to re-establish himself as the club’s first-choice right-back.

“I’m so excited to go to Singapore and work hard with the team,” the 29-year-old told Arsenal Player. “I’ve never been before, it’s my first time.

“I need to have a good pre-season. It was a hard year last year and I need to do some hard training to be fit for the first game.

“It’s also important for us to play Premier League teams like Stoke City and Everton because in one month we will play in the Premier League and we need to be ready.”

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Still prefer them having a camp in Austria and not flying far, like the old days. We always did better at the start of the season after Austria.


As long as we don’t have to play stoke.


It maybe good the team, theres no such thing as a friendly against Stoke or Mark Hughes

God is Bergkamp, Bergkamp is God

Yeah, they’re usually called executions

Anonymous Kumquat

Fingers crossed Stoke don’t duff up all our players before the season’s even started.


I am more worried about the pitch. It was like a battlefield when Brazil and Japan played recently. Hope it is in a better condition!

Gonna see my team play in a stadium for the first time! Can’t wait!!!!


Better start reading up. The pitch has improved tremendously.


But not so serious as to get yourselves injured please.


Are you sure kick-off is at 8.30pm BST? That would be 3.30 am in Singapore. 830pm Singapore time ( 130pm BST) is probably the correct kickoff time.

Gudang Bedil

Now feel the experience of staying late to watch your team play, European mates! 😀

South East Asian Fan

Santi Claws


New Zealand fan


I live in China and nearly spat out my noodles at that start time. 1:30BST blogs 🙂


Well, I wish my beloved team success.

suker 4 punishment

bouldie’ll munch on a lil curry puff and watch from the sidelines.


Can’t wait to see Cech on his debut. On another note, the games will be taxing as it is like 31•Celsius and super humid even though the games played at night. Definitely a different experience for most of the guys!


It looks as though the hope of having any major signings in early to have a full pre-season with the team is not going to happen. Of course Cech is in early, but a keeper is a lot different than a field player needing to fully acclimate. You see all the moves being made around us by the top clubs in England (Schnederlin to Man U is the worst one for me) and things seem awfully quiet on our transfer front. Wenger is surely working things behind the scenes, but at this point I am doubtful we will get the… Read more »


Which top clubs do you refer to? United are continuing their policy of buying whoever and whatever they can with little thought to how they fit as a team, probably the most disjointed United squad I’ve seen in my lifetime. City have done nothing bar getting absolutely taken to the cleaners by Liverpool over Sterling, and while they themselves have made a couple of good signings they’re still a long way from our standard, I’d say. Chelsea have been as inactive as us at this point, bar Falcao, which I doubt too many will lose sleep over. Basically, things are… Read more »


It has always been that DM for me, and I thought schneiderlin fit the bill. You can always win by a good old fashioned 1 – nil


I had presumed Hayden would really be pushed forward this year and deputise Coquelin (were we not to buy anyone), but the fact he hasn’t gone on the tour suggests Wenger doesn’t see him as quite ready. It could be a silly assumption, but I suspect we are still in the market; despite what everyone says I don’t think Arteta’s extension will have any bearing on our business whatsoever. You’d hope the failed gamble on our centre backs’ fitness at the beginning of last season would all but ensure Arsene won’t do the same with our centre mids, but who… Read more »

good 'ol 1 nil to Woolwich

Like I always say better 1 goal and 3 points than 3 goals and 1 point or none at all… However I’m not in panic mode.


There was zero chance of a new DM after Arteta signed that contract renewal, unfortunately. Wenger doesn’t rotate so there’s no way he’ll have somebody who cost big money who’s earning big money sitting on the bench or ‘killing’ Coq.

the only sam is nelson

by this logic, we haven’t actually signed Cech


Yes, if one of the top five DMs in the world becomes available for £11m and refuses to go anywhere except to us then sure, Wenger would snap him right up. Fingers crossed!!

good 'ol 1 nil to Woolwich

apparently we are going to sell Ozil and buy Ramirez from Chelski cos he runs araaaand a lot better than Ozil… hahaha! such bollox… we will sign someone soon… I don’t know in what position tho

Bergkamp's Chips

The players are taking this seriously you bet!

I was having dinner at the hotel they were staying. Arteta was hitting the gym before dinner while Jack and Cech were training hard after dinner as well.

Chanced upon Jack as he made his way to the gym with the physio and naturally asked him what he thought of Sp*rs.

His answer was spot on.

(kudos to the all arsenal staff / players who took their time out to show the Singaporean fans their appreciation. Class!)

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